|Issue No 83||09 February 2001|
Outworkers Still Waiting for Action of Sweatshops
Two years after promising a comprehensive strategy on sweatshops, the Carr Government has yet to introduce concrete measures to clean up the industry.
The FairWear Alliance of union, community and church groups says its becoming increasingly frustrated that the Premier's words and not being translated into action.
In the lead-up to the 1999 state election, Premier Carr made a high-rpofile promise to act on sweatshops, with legislation, government guidelines and a high-profile consumer campaign.
But FairWaer's Debbie Carstens says the fact that there are still retailers refusing to sign the voluntary Outworker Code of Conduct highlights the need for legislation.
"They've released an issues paper that outlined the strategy, but they have not actually started doing anything: no legislation, no direct programs for outworkers, no specific consumer commitment," Carstens says.
"The outworkers who have been involved in consultations with the government are now asking me: what's happened? It's the same the question I want to ask the Premier."
Supporters of FairWear rallied this week outside Sussan, one of the retailers who are refusing to sign the code, which sees retailers pledging to take responsibility for the employment practices down the production chain.
The Sussan corporation has denied that they need to participate in the No Sweat Shop accreditation and labeling process, claiming their existing clothing contracts require manufacturers to use legal labour sources.
In fact, many outworkers have reported sewing clothes sporting the Sussan label for well below award rates of pay, some for as little as $2 per hour.
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Economics: The Other Davos
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Politics: While We Were Snoozing
As we lay in our banana chair through summer the political world kept turning with a new man in the White House. Here’s what we missed while we were off the air.
History: Federation Day, 1901
One hundred years after Australia became a nation, Ralph Sawyer relives the original Federation Day through the eyes of Billy Hughes.
International: Burma: The Struggle Continues
As the internatinal community moves to bring Burma to account, APHEDA - Union Aid Abroad is working on the ground.
Review: Inside the Journopolis
In his new book, Rob Johnson brings the infamous Cash for Comment Affair to life.
Satire: Families Demand Longer Work Hours
A new report confirms the long held suspicion that employees who reduce their workload to spend more time with their spouse and children just end up annoying their families even more.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005